Between the Lines

BBC (ended 1994)



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Between the Lines

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Welcome to the guide to Between the Lines at This high quality police drama from the BBC concerned on the activities of the Complaints Investigation Bureau (CIB), investigating allegations of corruption at all levels of the police force, challenging the public's perception of the police force as the bastions of law, order and justice. Detective Superintendent Tony Clark Neil Pearson, a morally ambiguous career-minded high-flyer, headed a CIB team comprising Detective Inspector Harry Naylor Tom Georgeson and Detective Sergeant Maureen Connell Siobhan Redmond. As the officers discovered, the higher the seniority, the harder to prove the corruption existed, and a key cast member successfully evaded discovery for two seasons. The premise of the show, created by The Bill stalwart J.C. Wilsher, afforded the writers the freedom to explore all aspects of police corruption, while exploiting the entrenched hostility of other officers to the activities of the CIB. The nature of the work, as team members found themselves morally conflicted by their duty to uphold the law, and a separate focus on Clark's compromised personal life, provided an essential dramatic dynamic and earned the series the epithet "Between the Sheets". With its pioneering, hard edged realism combined with soap style storylines, the series set new standards for police dramas that would be followed over the coming decade. Each season ended on a cliffhanger, and its third and final season ended on an unresolved storyline.moreless
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  • Corruption in the police force is investigated by tough cop Tony Clarke (no saint himself) and his two subordinates, Harry and Mo.

    Preceding "The Wire" by ten years, this British series had many similarities - its central figures were flawed, unhappy, often deeply frustrated people who found out the hard way that what successes they could achieve were usually compromised or partial at best. Tony Clarke, the ostensible hero of the show (played by Neil Pearson), didn't take bribes as he investigated cops who did, but he was a feckless serial adulterer with a hurting wife, was not above blackmailing a superior, and could never avoid hot water, much of it deserved. This show was tough and harrowing; in its third season, when Tony and his chum Harry left the force to become private detectives, the intensity slackened a little, although (like Bunny Colvin of "The Wire"), they found that life in the private sector was no less full of compromises.moreless
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